Donor agreements are vital for identifying the legal rights of parties considering artificial insemination as part of assisted reproduction. An agreement should indicate that the donor does not have any rights subsequent to the donation. Specifically, the agreement should explain that no parental relationship is intended for the donor. It should be clear that donor’s parental rights are terminated and that the donor forever forfeits the ability to file for any type of custody or visitation if a child is subsequently born. The agreement would allow the recipient to dictate what happens with the donation or any embryos created using the donation.

Similarly, the party receiving the donation should waive the ability to file for any support from the donor. The agreement should also direct that the donor’s name not be on the birth certificate or any other legal document concerning parentage of the child. In the event of a known donor, you may also want to spell out if the child will ever be introduced to the donor. If this is a possibility, you may want to ask that contact information be kept up-to-date. The more likely scenario, however, is the use of an anonymous sperm donor. Regardless of the identity of the donor, best practice is to make sure a clear written agreement is in place to protect everyone’s respective interests.

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